Pitcher Jeff Samardzija had a great Opening Day start for the Chicago Cubs yesterday. Apparently, it was good enough that the injury-depleted Arizona Diamondbacks felt they needed to go out and trade for him. They did precisely that earlier, sending two of their top three pitchers to the north side.
Righties Braden Shipley and Aaron Blair were the key players included in the deal that are headed to Chicago. They both have a ways to develop, but should both be in Double-A by year’s end. Both project as potential 2-4 starters in the major league rotation eventually.
After losing ace Patrick Corbin for the season due to injury, it was apparent the D’Backs needed pitching help. With a stellar lineup, the Diamondbacks want to compete this season and felt it was necessary to go out and get Samardzija who will be a free agent after the 2015 season.
This obviously set the Cubs back in 2014, but could pay major dividends later on as they were in need of future rotation depth. Fans may not understand it now, but this was the right move for the organization. The Cubs got rid of their best pitcher, but also got rid of the distraction that comes with it. He was one of the Cubs’ last remaining question marks going forward and now his “question” has been answered, not to mention by netting the Cubs some valuable prospects.
Now, before freaking out at management for pulling off this deal, check the date on your phone. You may notice it’s April 1. So, no, this trade didn’t actually happen and for now, Samardzija is still a Cub.